Lent is upon us, so it is time to get all our partying out of our systems. In Germany, Cologne is to Karnival what New Orleans is to Mardi Gras, so of course we have to go check it out firsthand.
We took a fast train the little over 2 hours to Cologne. As soon as you disembark the train at the main train station, you find yourself standing in the shadow of Cologne cathedral, which is one of the largest in the world. Outside people are dressed up in all sorts of elaborate and colorful costumes. If you recall, Shea and I went to Mainz last year for Karnival, so we were able to re-use our costumes. Hello, Poncho Villa and Old blue-haired Lady...good to dust you off again.
We followed the bands of musicians through the streets and stopped in any number of bars where the local beer is flowing. Heck, if the bar was too crowded to get inside you just party right there in the street.
Cologne is known for its Kölsch beer, which is very strong and served in small glasses. We definitely helped ourselves to our fair share. We checked out several different bars and had a great time dancing, singing, and meeting people from all over the world who came to Cologne to celebrate.
After partying ourselves in to the late night hours, we headed to our hotel and hit the sack. We woke up Sunday feeling really rough...you could call it a Köln Karnival Kölsch Kater ("Kater" is German for hangover). We had a little lunch and then caught our train back home.
Next year, we'll meet you all there!